Juno Blizzard Hits Boston and PSC Hard – Office Closed Today!

Snowstorm-21Winter Storm Juno was pounding New England with moderate to heavy snow, high winds and coastal flooding Tuesday morning.

Parts of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island have seen more than a foot of snow.

Snow amounts in New York have ranged from 7.8 inches at Central Park in New York City to more than 28 inches in eastern Long Island. La Guardia airport in New York City has seen 11 inches.

In Massachusetts, up to 26.2 inches of snow has been measured in Shrewsbury, while Boston endured heavy snow and wind gusts over 30 mph from 1 a.m. to 9 a.m. ET. Wind gusts in eastern Massachusetts have topped 70 mph and coastal flooding has closed some roads.

Thunder snow was reported in coastal portions of Rhode Island and Massachusetts late Monday night and early Tuesday.

Snow in Mass TC 012715

Snow in Mass LC 012715

Snow in Mass Map 012715

Process Sensors Corp. is in New England! We Are Patriots!

Patriots Tom Brady Deflation 012315

Wet End Coat Weight Measurement on Bi-Oriented Film Lines

BOPP Film Lines2

 

Bi-Orientated Film is essentially stretched in two directions (machine and traverse direction) to manufacture shrink wrap and barrier type films with typical shrinkage in the 20 to 60% range dependent on formulation, label wraps, tapes, capacitance films and many other applications.  Typical films are Bi-Orientated Polypropylene (BOPP), Bi-Orientated Polyethylene Terephthalate (BOPET/polyester) and Bi-Orientated Polyamide (BOPA).  Stretching allows for the alignment of the polymer molecules to improve physical properties.

BOPP film is used in snack, pasta and other packaging applications including the overwrap for multi-packs.  BOPP is typically 15 to 30 microns and can be as thick as 50 microns.  Water based acrylic and PVDC coatings are often applied to increase moisture and odor barrier levels, and sealing properties.

Improved formulations and application technology allows for these acrylic and PVDC coatings to be measured with Near Infrared (NIR) technology on the wet end to optimize coat weight across the web profile.  Cost, regulation, standardization and maintenance are moving the measurement preference from nuclear to NIR.

Process Sensors Corp. MCT Nova Series of Near IR transmitters and Guardian Web Profile Systems make immediate and accurate coat weight measurement.  Please contact us today to discuss your application.

 

ICE-USA-2015-personalized-logo 012115

Super Bowl Combatants

Process Sensors Congratulates the AFC Champion New England Patriots and

NFC Seattle Seahawks on their victories in the Conference Finals and look

forward to the Super Bowl!

 

Patriots logo 011815

SeattleSeahawks

ICE USA Orlando 2015 – Booth 943

February 10-12, 2015
OCCC, Orlando, Florida

 

Join several thousand converting professionals from nearly 50 countries who will come together in Orlando, Florida, February 10-12, 2015, to see all the latest converting machinery and technologies on display from over 350 leading suppliers. The key decision makers from a wide range of companies that convert and process flexible, web-based materials will come together seeking innovative solutions to their specific challenges.

Process Sensors Corp. will be showing our Guardian System Series of Web Profile Systems featuring our multiple scanner and transmitter PC based system, our stand alone scanning system with Operator Interface (OI) and our economically priced starter system.  We will also have our stand alone MCT460 Near IR Transmitter.

Our MCT Series of Process Near IR transmitters can measure moisture, wet end water based coatings, dry end organic coatings, hot melt thickness, film thickness, residual moisture and web temperature.  Our lab and at-line QuikCheck can measure moisture and coat weight off line.

Please visit us to discuss your application needs during the ICE Show Orlando at Booth 943!

 

4 Display Screen Good 032714

 

 

ICE-USA-2015-personalized-logo 012115

Je Suis Charlie!

Je Suis Charlie 011315

Fish Meal On-Line Moisture Measurement with Near Infrared Transmitter

Fish Meal II 010615

Fish meal is usually made from “oily” fish such as mackerel, menhaden, pilchard or other local oily fish.  Very little fish meal is made from white fish (<2%) such as cod and it is referred to as “white fish meal” with an oil content of less than 6%.  Fish meal is also “fish” with only water and some oil extracted.  While historically used as a fertilizer additive fish meal’s protein and nutrients have shifted the market to animal feeds.

Fish meal is generally manufactured by the wet press method where the fish is cooked to coagulate the protein and then pressed to yield a solid phase (press cake, about 30% of feed) consisting of bones, protein and oil and a liquid phase of water, dissolved or suspended solids (press liquor, about 70% of feed).  The press is usually a dual screw rotating in opposing directions with increasing shaft size that decreases available volume in the press thereby increasing pressure and forcing the liquid component out through the perforations in the housing.  The press squeezes out as much liquid as possible to increase oil yield and quality while reducing moisture content that in turn reduces dryer energy consumption and increases dryer capacity.  The press reduces moisture from approximately 70% to about 50% and oil content to 4%.  The ground press cake is mixed with the processed stick water after the evaporation unit operations.

Most modern fish meal processing plants utilize either a direct fired two stage rotary dryer or an indirect steam dryer dependent on feed stock and required capacity.  The dryer exit moisture target is typically less than 11% to inhibit microbial growth and increase structural integrity of the fish meal cake or pellet.  The specific fish meal product being manufactured determines the appropriate moisture target.  The dryer temperature is usually less than 195?F (90?C) to avoid degradation of the available nutrients and protein within the cake.

Amazingly, most moisture measurements at dryer exit are conducted manually with a grab sample that is either “felt” for moisture content or measured off line with a di-electric, capacitance or microwave devices.  These techniques can be sensitive to density and temperature variations or simply the experienced operator out with the flu!

Moisture variations are due to changes in feedstock, density and throughput.  Typically air flow and dryer temperature are adjusted to maintain fish meal moisture set point at dryer exit.  Near infrared techniques allow for off line measurement of moisture, oil and in some cases protein.  Protein measurement off line usually requires a full spectrum NIR analyzer with chemometrics  calibration modeling programs such as PLS (Partial Least Squares) or PCR (Principle Component Regression).

On-line, Near Infrared photometers such as Process Sensors Corp. MCT460 NIR Transmitter allow for moisture and oil measurements.  Product variability in terms of bone and fish scales contribute to variation in sample handling and fish meal moisture measurement on-line with NIR transmitters.  Typical moisture range at dryer exit is 0-15% with reproducibility of 0.2% and accuracy of 0.2 to 0.3% fish meal moisture.

Fish oil is mainly made up of long chain fatty acids and due to absorption shifts in the Near IR has more variability than fish meal moisture measurement.  Fish meal composition changes in bone and fish scale can contribute to measurement variability.  Protein measurement is best made in the lab with Soxhlet Extraction or full spectrum NIR.  On-line photometers can trend protein at best, and are not suitable for on-line protein measurement.

The NIR moisture transmitter (photometer) is typically mounted 8 to 18 inches above a conveyor equipped with an air purge to keep the sight glass clean and requiring 3 to 10 psig air pressure.  The MCT460 Moisture Transmitter supplies a large 5.7 inch display of moisture percent and is also capable of displaying operator selected trend cycle simultaneously.  The Operator Interface (OI) supplies analog outputs and Ethernet communications.  Moisture and Oil Measurements from a single transmitter can be displayed on one Operator interface.

OI Touch Screen Good 070213 Crop

Photo I MCT 460 Operator Interface

 

MCT460 Powder and Bulk Solids Focus 100213

Photo II MCT460 Moisture Transmitter

 

Illustrations of a typical Fish Meal Flow Chart and Process Outline are shown below.

Fish Meal Process Outline 010615

Illustration I Fish Meal Process Flow Chart

Fish Meal Process II 010615

Illustration II Fish Meal General Unit Operations

 

Fish Meal Press 010615

Illustration III Fish Meal Press

 

Fish Meal Excel Charts 010615

 

Fish Meal Excel Trend Chart 010615

Graph I Fish Meal Trend Chart vs. MCT460 Moisture Measurement

 

Conclusion

NIR Moisture Transmitters can provide accurate and reliable fish meal moisture measurement at Dryer Exit to improve product quality, reduce energy costs, increase structural integrity and quality assurance with a quick Return on Investment (ROI) based on reduction of fuel costs and increase in product quality.

 

 

 

Happy Ice City from Process Sensors for New Year’s!

Process Sensors wishes to Gift You with a view of the Annual Harbin Ice Festival in China!  An incredible City of Ice!

 

Harbin Ice Festival Wikipedia Entry Entered in Part Below Click to Learn More from Wikipedia.

 

Harbin Ice Festival 010415

 

The festival originated in Harbin’s traditional ice lantern show and garden party that takes place in winter, which began in 1963. It was interrupted for a number of years during the Cultural Revolution, but has since been resumed when an annual event at Zhaolin Park was annnounced on January 5 in 1985.

In 2001, the Harbin Ice Festival was merged with Heilongjiang‘s International Ski Festival and got its new formal name, the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival.

In 2007, the festival featured a Canadian themed sculpture, in memoriam of Canadian doctor Norman Bethune. It was awarded a Guinness Record for the world’s largest snow sculpture: 250 metres long, 28 feet (8.5 m) high, using over 13,000 cubic metres of snow. The composition consisted of two parts: the “Niagara Falls” and the “crossing the Bering Strait” (the latter depicting the migration of the First Nations).

In 2014, the festival celebrated its 30th anniversary with the theme “50-Year Ice Snow, Charming Harbin”. Various fairs, competitions and expos were held from 20 December 2013 to February 2014.[2]

The annual Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival (Chinese: ????????; pinyinH?’?rb?n Guójì B?ngxu? Jié) is an annual winter festival that takes place with a theme in HarbinHeilongjiangChina, and now is the largest ice and snow festival in the world. At first participants in the festival were mainly Chinese, however it has since become an international festival and competition. The festival includes the world’s biggest ice sculptures.[1]

Officially, the festival starts on January 5 and lasts one month. However, exhibits often open earlier and stay longer, weather permitting. While ice sculptures are erected throughout the city, there are two main exhibition areas:

  • Sun Island is a recreational area on the opposite side of the Songhua River from the city, which features an expo of enormous snow sculptures.
  • Ice and Snow World is an area open during at night which features illuminated full size buildings made from blocks of 2–3′ thick ice taken directly from the Songhua River. At first China celebrated it then Harbin took over.

During the festival, there are ice lantern park touring activities held in many parks in the city. Winter activities during the festival include Yabuli alpine skiing, winter-swimming in the Songhua River, and the ice-lantern exhibition in Zhaolin Garden.

Harbin is located in Northeast China and receives cold winter wind from Siberia. The average temperature in summer is 21.2 °C (70.2 °F), and –16.8 °C (1.8 °F) in winter. Annual lows of -35 °C (–31 °F) are not uncommon.

 

Harbin China Ice Festival 2012

Happy Holidays from Process Sensors!

Holiday 2014 Blog Pic 122314 B

What is Damping Setting?

Damping is a smoothing function to make process measurement with point-to-point variability a stable measurement that reflects the moving average or the product measurement for adjustment and control.

If you are measuring hog fuel for a boiler or ore for mining or even paper moisture for label stock, you want the measurement quickly and also representative of what is being measured over time so that the control scheme doesn’t “chase itself” and instead optimizes operation.  Instead of reacting to point-to-point measurement variation that causes over compensation, a moving average allows control based on a more representative continuous measured value.

The moving average “smoothes” the measurement to allow for real time process control of application dependent unit operations.  Damping is the expression of the “Time Constant”.  The Time Constant is the time it takes for 2/3 of a step change to be reflected in the measured value.  The Time Constant or Damping is necessary to make the measurements more useful to optimize process control.

Example:  System is operating at 2%, an upset causes the constituent (moisture, organic, active ingredient or other) to 8%.  The system upset is 6% in this example.  The damping time constant is the time for the digital display an analog output to reflect 2/3rds of this change.  If the time constant is set for 1 second, the display and outputs will display 6% at one second.  If the trend continues, it will continue to increase value.  If trend stops or “lines out” (stabilizes), it will also reflect that in the moving average.

The damping is used from 1 to 10 seconds depending on application to smooth the real time measurement into a useful process control measurement.  There are also other integration and average measurements available.